The Washington Capitals announced that top line forward Evgeny Kuznetsov is day-to-day with an upper-body injury. The team may know more tomorrow, but his status remains up in the air for the rest of the series.
Barry Trotz had no update on Evgeny Kuznetsov (upper-body) today basically because Caps have been traveling today. Trotz said Kuznetsov is day to day and he might know more tomorrow.
Capitals already announced their practice tomorrow will be an optional.
— Tom Gulitti (@TomGulittiNHL) May 31, 2018
Evgeny Kuznetsov Injured In Game Two
The injury occurred during the high tempo first period in Game 2 after a high hit from Brayden McNabb against the Russian forward. The hit seemed to crush the 26-year-old’s arm and left him in obvious discomfort leaving the ice. He did not return. There was no penalty given for this high hit, which again leads to a discussion regarding inconsistencies with the officiating this playoffs.
In the regular season, he scored 27 goals and 56 assists for 83 points. This had him second for goals and points for his team behind Alex Ovechkin. He also added 48 minutes in penalties. His possession numbers were 48.6 percent Corsi and a relative Corsi of 0.5.
Kuznetsov also leads the league in playoff points, scoring 11 goals and 14 assists totaling 25 points. This injury will be a great loss to the Capitals. He was centering the top line with Ovechkin and Tom Wilson.
Over his five-year NHL career, Kuznetsov has been loyal to the Capitals since being originally drafted by them in the 1st round, 26th overall of the 2010 NHL draft. So far, the Russian native has put an impressive 80 goals and 185 assists for 265 career points in 340 career games.
What This Means for the Future.
Kuznetsov is a key component of Washington’s offensive production so this loss will be felt hard. Not just at scoring chances, but few match Kuznetsov with speed and skill. However, there are other skilled players in the Capitals arsenal that can step up, Lars Eller or Jakub Vrana to name a few. It’s going to be a tough series that’s likely to go down to the wire. For the Capitals to succeed, they need every player to play 100% from now.
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